The Fact News Service
Chandigarh, October 8
With an enthusiastic response in the supply of Covid-19 vaccine from the Centre in the past one month, Punjab plans to vaccinate its entire eligible population with the first dose by this month-end.
So far, the state has given 2.04 crore doses to eligible persons above 18 years of which 1.50 crore have been given the first dose whereas 54 lakh have been provided both doses.
“Out of the total 2.06 crore target population that is eligible for the vaccine in the state, till date, nearly 72% have been given the first shot. Since there is an increase in supply from the Centre, we are confident about giving the first jab to the entire eligible population of the state by the end of this month,” said state’s nodal officer for Covid-19, Dr Rajesh Bhaskar.
As per health department officials, in the past 10 days, Punjab has received 7.66 lakh doses of vaccine.
Government officials claim the state is likely to get 50 lakh doses this month.
The entire population of the state is likely to be fully vaccinated by the end of November, said former director PGIMR, Dr KK Talwar, who is the head of the expert group of the state government on tackling Covid-19.
Out of the total doses given, 1.79 crore are Covishield doses whereas around 24 lakh are Covaxine.
According to a few doctors involved in the vaccination, a sudden rush in demand is being witnessed in the rural areas of the state contrary to their earlier shyness for the vaccination.
“As the elections are around the corner, sarpanches are asking for more doses in a bid to earn more points in front of voters. Villages which earlier had banned the entry of health staff giving jabs are now repeatedly asking to speed-up vaccination,” said a doctor posted in Sangrur.
Health experts claim that there has not been any sign of the third wave in Punjab like most of the other parts of the country.
“After analysing samples through genome sequencing, we don’t find any signal for the third wave. But we should not let our guards down. Though there is no sign of the revival of the virus, it’s nature has been unpredictable,” said Dr Talwar.